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Lack of math skills leads to frustrating shopping trip

Published 7:36 am Wednesday, March 30, 2022

I remember as a kid, I was told that in the future, we would have everything delivered to our front door. Fast forward 40 years and here I am taking advantage of it at every opportunity. In fact, the delivery guy from Amazon is here so often we started setting a place for him for supper.
One thing I learned is that I can order nearly everything over the internet, but one thing I can’t do is order shoes online. I like to try a shoe on to see how it fits and then do that test walk across the store like Hop a Long Cassidy with one shoe on and one off to see how it feels. As a result, I had to bite the bullet and go into an actual store to shop. While I was there, I saw a display of socks with a sign that said $3.00 each or 4/$12.00. I had to chuckle and I began to think back of days gone by when I was in elementary school when I enjoyed math. My mother would quiz me every night after supper on my multiplication tables. Even though she had a hundred other things demanding her attention, she always made time for me. However, once I entered high school that enthusiasm for math left me quicker than a lasagna at a weight watchers meeting. I spent math class in high school typing out boobies on the calculator and throwing spit balls at my friend across the room.
While my 8th grade math teacher was wrong when she said that we wouldn’t be able to carry a calculator around in our pockets the rest of our lives, she was right in that math is everywhere. For example, I see rednecks riding around in trucks with 4×4 on the side. I assume they really like multiplication tables. I feel like yelling out the window, “Dude, its 16”!
I remember my math teacher trying to explain fractions. She asked that if I cut a pizza into 8 slices and I ate one slice, what fraction would I have left. I told her I didn’t know because I never just eat one slice. Then she asked me about Pi and asked if it was a square number. Well, I knew that answer because I knew pie was not square. Every piece I ever ate was triangle shaped.
I stopped by the grocery to pick up something for supper and I passed a display of Vienna sausages with a sign that said take an additional 1/3rd off the half priced sale price. I whipped out my calculator and 15 minutes later I gave up and just put them in my buggy. I really became confused when I read the nutrition label as it had the serving size in ounces and listed the calories in grams. I was beginning to wish I had paid attention during that class on the metric system.
When I got home my wife questioned me on how a trip to the store to get shoes turned into a bag full of Vienna sausage. I said I was pretty sure I got a good deal but who knows. I decided to distract her by just offering to take her out to eat. It worked for the most part until we got the bill. At the bottom of the bill it said gratuity was expected at 15%. I sat there and thought about that poor waitress. She could end up getting a tip that would make me a hero or we may have to duck out of the restaurant in disguise. It remains to be seen.